Medications and supplements that can raise your blood pressure

Know which medicines and herbal remedies can affect your blood pressure.

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Some medicines, supplements and other substances affect blood pressure. Some raise your blood pressure. Others make medicines you take to lower your blood pressure less effective. Some medicines that affect blood pressure are prescribed by your health care provider. Others are available without a prescription.

Here are some medicines, supplements and other substances that can raise blood pressure. If you use any of them and you're worried about how they affect your blood pressure, talk to your health care provider.

Pain medications

Some pain medicines cause the body to hold onto water. So do medicines that fight swelling in the body. Too much water in the body may create kidney problems and raise blood pressure. Examples include:

  • Indomethacin (Indocin).
  • Medicines available without a prescription such as aspirin (multiple doses a day), naproxen sodium (Aleve) and ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others).
  • Piroxicam (Feldene).

Have your blood pressure checked on a regular basis. Talk to your health care provider about which pain medicine is best for you. If you take a pain medicine that raises your blood pressure, lifestyle changes and additional medicines may help control your blood pressure.

Cold medicines, also called decongestants

Decongestants make blood vessels smaller. This makes it harder for blood to flow through the blood vessels. Sometimes that raises blood pressure. Decongestants also may make some blood pressure medicines not work as well. Examples of decongestants include:

  • Pseudoephedrine (Sudafed 24 Hour).
  • Phenylephrine (Neo-Synephrine).

Check the label of your cold or allergy medicine to see if it has a decongestant. If you have high blood pressure, it's best to stay away from decongestants. Ask your health care provider about cold products available without a prescription that are made for people with high blood pressure.


Antidepressants work by changing the body's response to brain chemicals that affect mood. These chemicals also may raise blood pressure. Examples of antidepressants that can raise blood pressure include:

  • Monoamine oxidase inhibitors.
  • Tricyclic antidepressants.
  • Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors.

If you take antidepressants, have your blood pressure checked regularly. If your blood pressure goes up or isn't well controlled, ask your health care provider about other medicines you could take.

Birth control with hormones

Birth control pills and some birth control devices contain hormones. These hormones may raise blood pressure by making some blood vessels smaller. This makes it harder for blood to flow. Most birth control pills, patches and other devices carry warnings that high blood pressure may be a side effect. The risk of high blood pressure is higher if you're older than age 35, overweight or a smoker.

Hormonal birth control may not raise blood pressure in all people. But if you're worried, have your blood pressure checked at least every six months.

If you already have high blood pressure, talk to your health care provider. Ask about using a different form of birth control. A birth control pill or device that has a lower dose of estrogen is less likely to raise blood pressure.


Caffeine can cause a short-term spike in blood pressure in people who don't use it all the time.

Caffeine helps to keep blood vessels open. This allows blood to easily pass through blood vessels. This may raise blood pressure for a short period of time. There isn't enough evidence to prove that caffeine raises blood pressure long term.

Examples of medicines and products with caffeine include:

  • Caffeine pills (Vivarin, NoDoz, others).
  • Coffee.
  • Energy drinks and other beverages.

The amount of caffeine in coffee varies widely. So it's difficult to say how many cups of coffee you can drink a day.

You can see if caffeine raises your blood pressure. Check your blood pressure about 30 minutes after drinking a cup of coffee or another beverage that has caffeine. If your blood pressure goes up by 5 to 10 points, you may be sensitive to caffeine's effect on blood pressure.

Herbal supplements

Remember to tell your health care provider about any herbal supplements you take. Ask about any supplements you're thinking about taking. Examples of herbal supplements that may affect your blood pressure or blood pressure medicines include:

  • Arnica (Arnica montana).
  • Ephedra (ma-huang).
  • Ginseng (Panax quinquefolius, Panax ginseng).
  • Guarana (Paullinia cupana).
  • Licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra).

Herbal supplements may not be safe just because they're natural. Check with your health care provider before taking any herbal supplements. You may need to avoid supplements that raise your blood pressure or make your blood pressure medicines less effective.

Biological therapies

Powerful medicines used in biological therapies can have side effects. One of those side effects is high blood pressure. Some of these medicines target specific cells. Others use the body's own immune system to fight some autoimmune diseases and cancers.

Angiogenesis inhibitors and some monoclonal antibodies may raise blood pressure. Examples of these medicines include:

  • Bevacizumab (Avastin).
  • Gefitinib (Iressa).
  • Imatinib (Gleevec).
  • Pazopanib (Votrient).
  • Ramucirumab (Cyramza).


Most people who've had an organ transplant take immunosuppressants. These medicines help keep the body from rejecting the new organ. Some immunosuppressants can raise blood pressure. This may be due to the ways immunosuppressants affect the kidneys. Examples of immunosuppressants that can raise blood pressure include:

  • Cyclosporine (Gengraf, Neoral, Sandimmune).
  • Tacrolimus (Astagraf XL, Prograf, Envarsus XR).

Have your blood pressure checked on a regular basis. If your blood pressure goes up or isn't well controlled, ask your health care provider about other medicines you can take. Your health care provider may recommend lifestyle changes or additional medicines to control your high blood pressure.


Stimulants, such as methylphenidate (Concerta, Ritalin, others), can cause the heart to beat faster or unevenly. This may raise blood pressure.

Have your blood pressure checked regularly if you take a stimulant. If your blood pressure goes up or isn't well controlled, ask your health care provider about other medicines you can take. Lifestyle changes or additional medicines may help control your high blood pressure.

A caution on illegal drugs

Illegal drugs can raise blood pressure. They may narrow the arteries that supply blood to the heart. This raises heart rate and damages heart muscle.

Examples of illegal drugs that may affect your heart include:

  • Amphetamines, including methamphetamine.
  • Cocaine.
  • Ecstasy (MDMA).

If you're using illegal drugs, it's important to stop. Ask your health care provider for information on counseling or drug treatment programs.

From Mayo Clinic to your inbox

Sign up for free and stay up to date on research advancements, health tips, current health topics, and expertise on managing health. Click here for an email preview.

To provide you with the most relevant and helpful information, and understand which information is beneficial, we may combine your email and website usage information with other information we have about you. If you are a Mayo Clinic patient, this could include protected health information. If we combine this information with your protected health information, we will treat all of that information as protected health information and will only use or disclose that information as set forth in our notice of privacy practices. You may opt-out of email communications at any time by clicking on the unsubscribe link in the e-mail.

April 13, 2023 See more In-depth

See also

  1. Medication-free hypertension control
  2. Alcohol: Does it affect blood pressure?
  3. Alpha blockers
  4. Amputation and diabetes
  5. Angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors
  6. Angiotensin II receptor blockers
  7. Anxiety: A cause of high blood pressure?
  8. Arteriosclerosis / atherosclerosis
  9. Artificial sweeteners: Any effect on blood sugar?
  10. AskMayoMom Pediatric Urology
  11. Beta blockers
  12. Beta blockers: Do they cause weight gain?
  13. Beta blockers: How do they affect exercise?
  14. Birth control pill FAQ
  15. Blood glucose meters
  16. Blood glucose monitors
  17. Blood pressure: Can it be higher in one arm?
  18. Blood pressure chart
  19. Blood pressure cuff: Does size matter?
  20. Blood pressure: Does it have a daily pattern?
  21. Blood pressure: Is it affected by cold weather?
  22. Blood pressure medication: Still necessary if I lose weight?
  23. Blood pressure medications: Can they raise my triglycerides?
  24. Blood pressure readings: Why higher at home?
  25. Blood pressure test
  26. Blood pressure tip: Get more potassium
  27. Blood sugar levels can fluctuate for many reasons
  28. Blood sugar testing: Why, when and how
  29. Bone and joint problems associated with diabetes
  30. How kidneys work
  31. Bump on the head: When is it a serious head injury?
  32. Caffeine and hypertension
  33. Calcium channel blockers
  34. Calcium supplements: Do they interfere with blood pressure drugs?
  35. Can whole-grain foods lower blood pressure?
  36. Central-acting agents
  37. Choosing blood pressure medicines
  38. Chronic daily headaches
  39. Chronic kidney disease
  40. Chronic kidney disease: Is a clinical trial right for me?
  41. Coarctation of the aorta
  42. COVID-19: Who's at higher risk of serious symptoms?
  43. Cushing syndrome
  44. DASH diet
  45. DASH diet: Recommended servings
  46. Sample DASH menus
  47. Diabetes
  48. Diabetes and depression: Coping with the two conditions
  49. Diabetes and exercise: When to monitor your blood sugar
  50. Diabetes and heat
  51. 10 ways to avoid diabetes complications
  52. Diabetes diet: Should I avoid sweet fruits?
  53. Diabetes diet: Create your healthy-eating plan
  54. Diabetes foods: Can I substitute honey for sugar?
  55. Diabetes and liver
  56. Diabetes management: How lifestyle, daily routine affect blood sugar
  57. Diabetes symptoms
  58. Diabetes treatment: Can cinnamon lower blood sugar?
  59. Using insulin
  60. Diuretics
  61. Diuretics: A cause of low potassium?
  62. Diuretics: Cause of gout?
  63. Dizziness
  64. Do infrared saunas have any health benefits?
  65. Drug addiction (substance use disorder)
  66. Eating right for chronic kidney disease
  67. High blood pressure and exercise
  68. Fibromuscular dysplasia
  69. Free blood pressure machines: Are they accurate?
  70. Home blood pressure monitoring
  71. Glomerulonephritis
  72. Glycemic index: A helpful tool for diabetes?
  73. Guillain-Barre syndrome
  74. Headaches and hormones
  75. Headaches: Treatment depends on your diagnosis and symptoms
  76. Heart and Blood Health
  77. Herbal supplements and heart drugs
  78. High blood pressure (hypertension)
  79. High blood pressure and cold remedies: Which are safe?
  80. High blood pressure and sex
  81. High blood pressure dangers
  82. How does IgA nephropathy (Berger's disease) cause kidney damage?
  83. How opioid use disorder occurs
  84. How to tell if a loved one is abusing opioids
  85. What is hypertension? A Mayo Clinic expert explains.
  86. Hypertension FAQs
  87. Hypertensive crisis: What are the symptoms?
  88. Hypothermia
  89. I have IgA nephrology. Will I need a kidney transplant?
  90. IgA nephropathy (Berger disease)
  91. Insulin and weight gain
  92. Intracranial hematoma
  93. Isolated systolic hypertension: A health concern?
  94. What is kidney disease? An expert explains
  95. Kidney disease FAQs
  96. Kratom: Unsafe and ineffective
  97. Kratom for opioid withdrawal
  98. L-arginine: Does it lower blood pressure?
  99. Late-night eating: OK if you have diabetes?
  100. Lead poisoning
  101. Living with IgA nephropathy (Berger's disease) and C3G
  102. Low-phosphorus diet: Helpful for kidney disease?
  103. Menopause and high blood pressure: What's the connection?
  104. Molar pregnancy
  105. MRI: Is gadolinium safe for people with kidney problems?
  106. New Test for Preeclampsia
  107. Nighttime headaches: Relief
  108. Nosebleeds
  109. Obstructive sleep apnea
  110. Obstructive Sleep Apnea
  111. Opioid stewardship: What is it?
  112. Pain Management
  113. Pheochromocytoma
  114. Picnic Problems: High Sodium
  115. Pituitary tumors
  116. Polycystic kidney disease
  117. Polypill: Does it treat heart disease?
  118. Poppy seed tea: Beneficial or dangerous?
  119. Porphyria
  120. Postpartum preeclampsia
  121. Preeclampsia
  122. Prescription drug abuse
  123. Primary aldosteronism
  124. Pulse pressure: An indicator of heart health?
  125. Mayo Clinic Minute: Rattlesnakes, scorpions and other desert dangers
  126. Reactive hypoglycemia: What can I do?
  127. Renal diet for vegetarians
  128. Resperate: Can it help reduce blood pressure?
  129. Scorpion sting
  130. Secondary hypertension
  131. Serotonin syndrome
  132. Sleep deprivation: A cause of high blood pressure?
  133. Sleep tips
  134. Snoring
  135. Sodium
  136. Spider bites
  137. Stress and high blood pressure
  138. Symptom Checker
  139. Takayasu's arteritis
  140. Tapering off opioids: When and how
  141. Tetanus
  142. Tetanus shots: Is it risky to receive 'extra' boosters?
  143. The dawn phenomenon: What can you do?
  144. Understanding complement 3 glomerulopathy (C3G)
  145. Understanding IgA nephropathy (Berger's disease)
  146. Vasodilators
  147. Vegetarian diet: Can it help me control my diabetes?
  148. Vesicoureteral reflux
  149. Video: Heart and circulatory system
  150. How to measure blood pressure using a manual monitor
  151. How to measure blood pressure using an automatic monitor
  152. Obstructive sleep apnea: What happens?
  153. What is blood pressure?
  154. Can a lack of vitamin D cause high blood pressure?
  155. What are opioids and why are they dangerous?
  156. White coat hypertension
  157. Wrist blood pressure monitors: Are they accurate?
  158. Xylazine
  159. Effectively managing chronic kidney disease
  160. Mayo Clinic Minute: Do not share pain medication
  161. Mayo Clinic Minute: Avoid opioids for chronic pain
  162. Mayo Clinic Minute: Be careful not to pop pain pills
  163. Mayo Clinic Minute: Out of shape kids and diabetes